Building speech and teaching emotions: Educational resources for autistic children Born as a partnership between ART and Linguisticator Ltd, Cambridge Autism Learning is a new online platform providing educational resources for autistic people and parents of autistic children. With a disproportionate amount of research focusing on autistic people who have language, these important resources will help many, especially the 20% of autistic children who struggle with it. The platform will include speech training courses for parents and carers of autistic children, videos delivered by experts in the field of autism research and curated lists of books and tools available elsewhere. It has launched in January 2019 with two resources; Speech Builder and The Transporters. Speech Builder Speech Builder is a unique resource developed by Linguisticator and a research team led by Professor Simon Baron-Cohen, with generous funding provided by ART. It provides an online course for parents and carers of minimally verbal autistic children, that can help them support their children to make sounds and speak. It is based on the knowledge gained during a previous research project aimed at understanding why some autistic children struggle to speak or produce sounds. It turned out that the majority of children who were minimally verbal had motor articulation issues, suggesting that these could potentially be helped through training and practice. As Dr Ralby of Linguisticator explains: Many people with autism struggle with fine motor skills. We often thing of this in terms of dexterity of the hands, but the movements of the tongue and vocal system are incredibly precise and rapid in speech production. We have to address these physical challenges that might prevent some autistic children from learning to speak. Through Speech Builder parents will learn to break down sound and speech into the physical tongue and lip movements needed to make them, and in turn help their children to practice them through exercise and activities. Learn more about Speech Builder The Transporters The Transporters is a children’s animation developed by Professor Simon Baron-Cohen and his team at the Autism Research Centre for children who find it hard to recognise emotions. The mini-series is made up of 15 animated videos of vehicles with real human faces. Many autistic children understand and enjoy rule-based systems such as trains that move along tracks, yet find facial expressions confusing. With the combination of the two, the research team found that autistic children improved in emotion recognition after as little as one month. We are delighted to be re-launching The Transporters on the Cambridge Autism Learning platform. It is vital that we make evidence-based educational resources available to the autism community, and this new platform will do just that. - Professor Simon Baron-Cohen The animations are available in British and American English, German and Dutch. Learn more about The Transporters Thank you to our supporters It's only thanks to the generous support of many who believe in the power of research to change the future, that we can continue investing in projects like this that can have tangible impact in the lives of autistic people and their families. Thank you to all who have donated and continue to donate to ensure autistic people receive the best possible support.